By: BRANDON GROVES
Although we all try to avoid judging people, we may find ourselves practicing or receiving this from others. It is common to judge someone due to their appearance, communication skills and personality. For Bailey Perez, she has been able to use this for great success.
Perez is currently the 2016 Miss Indiana Teen National American Miss. As a competing member of the organization since five years old, Perez was able to win many titles while also gaining the skills needed for a bright future.
“The emphasis is placed on the importance of gaining self-confidence, learning new skills, learning good attitudes about competition and setting and achieving personal goals,” said Perez.
While Perez is happy to be competing in the National Pageant over the Thanksgiving week, she is honored to have been chosen to represent her state.
“You meet so many amazing young leaders during your competition weekends that it is a humbling experience to be chosen as your state queen to represent your state on a national level,” Perez said.
Although Perez has experienced a lot of positivity over the years, she has also dealt with hard times. Perez went through several years of bullying during high school and, like many teenagers, she had a hard time dealing with the harsh negativity from her own classmates.
“My grades suffered, my personal life and family suffered and I never felt like I had a place to learn and grow,” she said.
After overcoming this difficulty with the help of her coaches and state directors from the National American Miss Pageant, Perez created a non-profit organization called TRUTH (Teens Responsibility United to Help).
“We provide support to those teens and youth in our communities who need to know they are not alone and things will get better,” Perez said.
TRUTH educates the youth, parents and school administrators about bullying policies and laws. The organization also teaches children to stand up for themselves and never allow others to bully them.
As a freshman, Perez is majoring in communications and will minor in journalism. She wants to go into sports broadcasting to help become a sideline reporter.
Although she knows that people assume that her pageant work makes her a “sassy glitzy girl,” Perez has more to her than what meets the eye.
“I love wearing camo and hanging out with my brothers while hunting and fishing,” Perez said. “I am a competitive dancer and I have been dancing since I was four years old. I also love photography and writing short stories.”